oh where, oh where can it be?

My motivation. It is missing, and has been for some time.

Even the smallest of tasks seem overwhelming.

I know it’s part of the depression I’ve been battling. Lexapro has helped so much, but I still feel like everything is so much harder than it should be. The chronic pain and tension headaches haven’t been helping the situation.

There isn’t any point to this post other than to just get it out. I thought about only posting this to my private blog, but then realized it was silly to be embarrassed about it. 

keeping it real

Instead of giving in to the grief and canceling all my plans/appointments today, which is what I wanted to do when I woke up at six this morning, I did all the things. I had car repairs in the morning, followed by much work, followed by an appointment with my primary care doc, and finally a trip to west county to pick up my kid whom I’m keeping tonight so his dad can go to a concert. (Yay for extra kid time). 

I feel good about how much I’ve accomplished today, because I’ve been feeling really down about my productivity (among other things) the last few weeks. I feel like I’m on the verge of a great, black depression taking over my life. I have been there before, and I don’t want to go back. Therefore, after a long talk with my doctor today, I have decided to start taking Lexapro. 

I do wish it was easier to explain depression to someone who hasn’t experienced it before. It doesn’t mean I’m unhappy with you or don’t love you. It has absolutely nothing to do with that. The book I’m currently reading, My Heart And Other Black Holes, describes depression as a “black slug” that fills you up and sucks away your motivation and ability to feel. I find that to be fairly accurate. Lack of motivation and extreme exhaustion have been hitting me hard this time around. 

That said, I have been considering some changes to my life and routine. I’m finally going to sign up for the yoga classes I’ve been wanting to take. I’m going to continue working on the minimalism projects I’ve assigned myself. I’m going to take my meds, exercise, and reach out more to my friends. I’m going to be more present and in the moment. The only way my life is going to change is if I change it. 

I feel better right now than I have in a while. It feels good to be proactive. 

open up my head and let me out

  1. I wrote this long blog post and then saved it to drafts. Sometimes I just need to write it out, but don’t feel like sharing it. I have three posts in the draft folder that I will probably never delete, but I’ll also never post.
  2. I woke up not feeling well today. I have a horrible headache. I’m not sure why.  The weather here is rainy and blah, so it seems like a good day to just stay inside and try to relax. I don’t know why relaxing is so hard for me. It makes me feel guilty. 
  3. I’ve been sad lately. I think maybe my Tamoxifen induced depression is back. I’m struggling with whether or not I want to medicate it or leave it be. I’m so sick of pills. 
  4. I’m on a big house decoration kick. Next up: curtains. This stuff is more exciting to me than I feel like it should be. Just another sign of my old age, I guess.
  5. Danielle & I watched The Babadook last night. It was creepy as fuck. It hit a little too close to home with the whole single mom and young son aspect of it. 
  6. I didn’t sleep very well last night. See #5.  Oh and also…my regularly scheduled insomnia, of course. Lorazepam is not working. *sigh*
  7. Sundays make me anxious. I don’t expect this one to be any different. Ugh. I need a hug, and my boyfriend won’t be back until Thursday. *sad face*

12:45 am

I’m feeling very lonely tonight.

I’ve spent most of the evening crying. i have a lot of stuff to figure out, but I wrote out my thoughts (in a separate private post) and I think that helped.

On a lighter note, I started watching Season 2 of American Horror Story this weekend, and holy fuck that season is good. It’s so creepy and fucked up. I want to watch more right now, but I’ll never get to sleep if I do that.

I can’t believe I’m about to write this, but: I’m really glad this weekend is over.

how lovely to be a woman…

As I’ve mentioned previously, I’m no longer able to take birth control pills, because the estrogen helps my cancer grow. So today I went to see my newest doctor, Dr. Andrea Hageman.  She is a gynecological oncologist.  Regular gynecologists are scared of me now (thanks, breast cancer), so Dr. Naughton referred me to Dr. Hageman.  I’m so grateful, because she is awesome.  I highly recommend her to any female in need of such care in the St. Louis area.

We talked about my birth control options.  She told me that I probably wouldn’t be able to get pregnant, because my ovaries are shutting down due to the chemo.  I haven’t had a period in over a month, and now I’m having hot flashes.  My body is going into what is referred to as chemopause.  Chemo induced menopause. Luckily, this is usually temporary, but it still totally sucks.  I am not willing to chance pregnancy, no matter how slight, so we discussed IUDs.  I ultimately decided upon the Mirena, and she told me she could place it today.  I was a little surprised about that, but said okay.

HOLY FUCKING SHIT IT HURT.

Let me break this down for those of you that don’t know or are curious.

  • First she did a manual exam to get an idea of the size and shape of my uterus.
  • Then she inserted the speculum/clamp, and cleaned the cervix.
  • Next she inserted the sound, which is a straight metal rod, and is used to measure the uterus. It is inserted through the cervix.  It caused the most painful cramping feeling.  I yelped in pain when she inserted it.
  • Next she inserted the IUD (a small, T shaped plastic device). That hurt just as much, and took longer.  I started to feel really dizzy and nauseous at this point.  The nurse kept urging me to take deep breaths, which did help a bit, but this part felt like it took forever.
  • She cut the strings of the IUD, which hang out of the cervix, and will allow me to check to make sure the IUD is still in place.
  • Then she removed the clamp and speculum. 

The pain caused me to feel dizzy, sweaty, and nauseous.  My blood pressure dropped very low, and I wasn’t able to stand up for about 25 minutes after the procedure.  I was given a cold wash cloth, orange juice, and graham crackers, which helped a lot. Dr. Hageman told me to expect bad cramps for the next 48 hours, as well as some bleeding. 

The cramps are definitely here, and they suck.  Even after prescription strength ibuprofen and oxycodone, they still hurt enough that I don’t see myself leaving the couch anytime soon.  However, I think it’s going to be well worth it.  I won’t have to worry about birth control for the next five years, and no periods either.  I’ll take it.

We discussed my hot flashes.  She prescribed Effexor to help with those, and it should also help regulate my mood.  I’ve battled depression for most of my adult life, and while I think I’m doing really well all things considered, it certainly won’t hurt to get some help in that area.

I’ve been a bit depressed the last week or so, because I have been so sick.  Chemo is kicking my ass.  It’s taking longer to feel better, and the various side effects have gotten more intense.  I had a migraine for the last two days.  I’m finally starting to feel better.  I’m scared to say that though, because last time I said that I started feeling bad again.

Friday is chemo #4.  I’m hoping it won’t be even worse than this round.  I’m scared.  Last night, I cried about it.  That’s how bad it has gotten.  I felt better after cuddling with Jackson for a while. He is the reason I am going to continue to subject myself to this. I have to be okay for him.

I’m grateful that I’m feeling better today.  I’m not feeling good, but definitely better.  I think this is going to be a good week, so I’m trying to stay upbeat.  I really do believe that attitude plays a big part in how I feel.  If I make an effort to be happy, then I’m usually happy. 

I’ve read two Gillian Flynn books in the past week.  Dark Places and Gone Girl.  They were both great.  She is quickly becoming a favorite.  I can’t wait to start Sharp Objects